“That is the true genius of America, a faith in the simple dreams of its people, the insistence on small miracles. That we can say what we think, write what we think, without hearing a sudden knock on the door. That we can have an idea and start our own business without paying a bribe or hiring somebody’s son. That we can participate in the political process without fear of retribution, and that our votes will be counted — or at least, most of the time.”
-BARACK OBAMA, speech at 2004 Democratic Convention
Most people who heard that speech assumed the snarky little “most of the time” comment at the end only applied to the preceding phrase on voting – just a cheap shot at the 2000 presidential election results.
Turns out he also meant it to apply to “sudden knock at the door”, “paying a bribe”, “hiring somebody’s son”, and most definitely to “fear of retribution”.
And now I find myself wondering if “most of the time” was a clumsy “Aliens” reference: